WARNING: Please perform an inventory integrity with fix options before performing a physical count. 

  • The external count method is designed to help you follow a process when working with a company (counting group) that will count their inventory and supply you with a file including the new count.
  • There may be some variation in what service you are getting so I will explain a little bit about some of the alternatives as side topics.

WARNING: You can not have duplicate parts, or barcodes anywhere in this process or things will break

  • How can we identify if there are duplicates?
    • If you create the export file for the counting group in excel and sort by Partnumber / Barcode you can run an excel formula to detect duplicates
    • Formula: (TO BE ADDED)

Verified count / part number aware

  • In a verified count, you provide a list of parts with associated barcodes so that the group counting your inventory can verify that the barcode they are scanning is recognized and know right away whether or not the part can be found in the POS System for later entry.
  • In System Five, you will need to export an inventory report that contains the information that the counting group requires in order for them to properly count your inventory.

Step 01: Perform a manual backup

  • Make sure everyone is out of your System Five data
  • Perform a manual backup.
  • You should have the backup readily accessible as a copy of the folder, or as a common file format like .zip or .rar

Step 02: Restore the backup into the training directory

  • You will overwrite the contents of the training directory using the backup.
  • This is the same process used to restore a backup, but we want to be able to run the backup from training.
  • It is very useful to have a copy of things before the count process starts

Step 03: Design an inventory report containing the information for the counting group

Here are the file requirements  Here is the validation file format required by our programs:  along with a sample ... Delimiter: COMMA (,)     Field Name                       Field Item                                 1 Barcode                              2 Description                          3 Qty (ignore)                         4 Ave. Cost                            5   Widget01,,AIRFRS TREE 24C WILD CHERRY    1/12,,10.39 Widget02,     040493221186,AIRFRS VENCHI 18CT        1,,11.70
  • Navigate to the design inventory report: Reports > Inventory Reports > Design Inventory Reports
  • Report Setting: Click on the Report Tab
    • Sort By: Main Cateogry
    • Select On: List All
    • Cost Pricing: Average/Actual Cost
    • Department: Department you are counting (if you have departments feature, otherwise please ignore) * Columns for use to generate the report: Click on Columns tab
    • Part Number
    • Barcode Number
    • Description
    • In Stock (This file is often left blank)
      • You can use the “Calculation” field in the report and change the Heading to “In Stock”, or “Quantity”
    • Landed
      • Because the Setting are set to average/actual cost, this will contain your average cost
  • Options necessary: Click on the Options tab
    • List Items Marked for Deletion (Make sure it is checked / has a check mark beside it)
    • List Barcodes from Alternate Suppliers Tab (Make sure it is checked / has a check mark beside it)

Step 04: Export report results to Excel

  • The counting group will often want the file in a common format like .CSV (comma separated values). I recommend exporting to excel first so you have a clean file that is safe to review.
    • Information: .CSV files when opened are interpreted and may be changed or damaged by this process. I reccomend that once a .CSV file is created it should not be re-opened in order to prevent accidentally damaging the file.

Step 05: Does the counting group need some adjustments to this file?

  • This may require that you contact the counting group to see how they handle multiple barcodes for a single part number.
  • Do they require a part number on every record?
  • Will they be consolidating all the barcode lines into one part record?

Step 06: Give your data to the counting group

  • From excel you can perform a “Save As” and save as the .CSV file format to provide your data to the counting group.
  • It is wise to have the counting group review the file well in advance of the count in order to make sure they can use it
  • When the physical count process actually happens they may need a fresh copy of your exported data.
    • The new data will give them updated average costs and include any new parts
  • If they treat each barcode like its own part number Things will still work out with the method being described.

Step 07: The count is performed by your counting group

  • This section is a place to record some of the questions that your counting group may have during the count process
  • They will ask about parts numbers or barcodes that they come across that are not in the data you provided to them

Step 08: Receive and prepare count file from the counting group

  • The file is in the same format they requested form you, except that it has the quantity filled in.
  • Import the count file into excel for review
    • Special process needs to happen to prevent file from being damaged.
    • Save this as the original and keep it for reivew
  • Use the excel file to create a new .csv consisting of Lookup, and quantity
    • Lookup: This would normally be a part number or barcode attached to the alternate supplier of your item
    • quantity: This would be the quantity of the part that was counted
  • The procedure that allows us to import quantities via part number or lookup is the scan batch functionality of the physical count.

Step 09: Process the count file

  • Import the prepared scan batch file
  • Clean up any lines that didn't link to parts. “lines show in red”
    • You may have to search for them.
    • Export to excel and sort by category might make it easier to find them. Then do a find on the grid in System Five to and find the correct part, or take note of and remove the line.
  • Create an uninitialized count batch (Empty count batch ready to be used.)
  • Apply scan batch to the count batch
  • Process the count batch

Step 10: Review

  • One way to review the data is to export the inventory value report with detail to Excel, and do a side by side comparison with the count file information provided to you by the counting group
  • Another simple comparison is that the reports from the counting group have the same inventory value as your internal inventory value report